Maintaining a driveway is an essential part of homeownership. One of the most common types of driveways in use today is asphalt, which offers durability and low maintenance costs.
However, over time, exposure to weather elements can lead to cracks and potholes in the surface of your driveway. To prevent further damage, resurfacing or sealcoating your asphalt driveway may be necessary.
What is Asphalt Resurfacing & Sealcoating?
Resurfacing involves placing another layer of asphalt on top of the existing one, while sealcoating involves applying a protective coating to the surface. Both options have their advantages and disadvantages depending on the condition of the current pavement and budget considerations.
It is critical to understand these differences before deciding on which option best suits your needs. This article will help you understand the importance of maintaining asphalt driveway and help you decide which is the best option to maintain your driveway for years to come.
So without further ado, let’s begin.
Understanding The Importance Of Maintaining Your Asphalt Driveway
Maintaining your asphalt driveway ensures its longevity and durability.
Regular upkeep not only increases the aesthetic appeal of your property but also protects you from spiraling down into implementing costly repairs in the future.
Asphalt driveways are prone to damage caused by harsh weather conditions, such as extreme temperatures, heavy rainfall, and snowfall. Constant exposure to such harmful elements can create cracks, potholes, and possible erosion of the surface layer.
When you neglect these minor problems, it can result in bigger problems which may require extensive repair work and can even lead to asphalt surface replacement.
Therefore, it is important that one should take proactive measures to maintain their driveway. It may include removing debris, filling cracks and sealing off the surface.
Not only do they keep the asphalt surface in good shape, but also prevents water build up.
Signs Your Driveway Needs Attention
- Cracks: Small cracks in the asphalt can be signs of age or wear and tear. If left untreated, they can become larger and more problematic.
- Potholes: Potholes are holes in the asphalt that can be caused by heavy traffic or weather conditions. They can be dangerous and should be repaired as soon as possible.
- Fading color: Over time, the color of the asphalt can fade due to exposure to the sun and weather. This can make your driveway look old and worn out.
- Drainage issues: If water is pooling on your driveway or not draining properly, it could be a sign of underlying issues with the asphalt.
- Uneven surface: If your driveway is no longer level or has bumps and dips, it may be time for repairs or resurfacing.
Resurfacing Your Asphalt Driveway: Steps And Considerations
Resurfacing an asphalt driveway involves the removal of the top layer of existing pavement and replacing it with a new one. It is one of the two ways you can repair damaged asphalt.
Before starting the process, it is important to evaluate whether resurfacing is necessary or if sealcoating would suffice. If there are deep cracks or potholes in the driveway, resurfacing may be needed.
The first step in resurfacing is to clean and prepare the surface by removing any debris, vegetation, or loose material that could affect the adhesion of the new asphalt layer.
Next, any necessary repairs should be made before applying a bonding agent to ensure proper adhesion between old and new layers. Once these steps are completed, a fresh layer of hot mix asphalt is applied and compacted using heavy equipment such as rollers.
The newly paved surface is then left to cure for at least 24 hours before allowing any vehicle to pass through it.
Sealcoating Your Asphalt Driveway: Benefits And Process
The other way of ensuring the longevity of your asphalt driveway is sealcoating.
Sealcoating your asphalt driveway is like giving it a new lease on life. It provides an extra layer of protection against natural elements such as rain, snow, and UV rays that can cause damage to the surface over time.
The process involves applying a thin layer of sealant over the entire driveway using specialized equipment. This creates a uniform barrier that not only enhances its appearance but also prevents any cracks or potholes from forming in the future by keeping out water, oil, and other harmful substances.
Moreover, sealcoating helps extend the lifespan of your driveway by preventing oxidation and deterioration caused by exposure to air and sunlight. With regular maintenance and proper care, a well-sealed asphalt driveway can last for up to 20 years before needing major repairs or replacement.
Depending on the condition of your asphalt, you can simply choose between resurfacing or sealcoating.
Maintenance Tips To Extend The Life Of Your Asphalt Driveway
While opting-in for sealcoating or resurfacing is a great way to extend the life of your asphalt driveway, but prevention is always better than cure. It’s best that you keep in mind a few maintenance checks to ensure the life of your asphalt driveway is extended. By doing so, you won’t have to invest a fortune any time soon in getting a resurface job done.
Here are some ways how you can maintain your asphalt driveway:
- Clean the driveway surface from debris, leaves or dirt. Dirt can hold moisture which can lead to cracks in the pavement.
- Keep the asphalt surface clean from oil spills or leaks. The best way is to use a degreaser so oil spills do not penetrate the asphalt.
- Fill up cracks or potholes as soon as they start appearing. You can do it with a filler material that matches the texture & color of the existing asphalt.
- Don’t forget to get sealcoating done by professionals every 2-3 years depending on the weather conditions in your area.
By following these simple maintenance tips regularly, you can avoid costly repairs down the road and enjoy a smooth, durable driveway for many years to come.
In conclusion, taking care of your asphalt driveway should not be overlooked as it plays a significant role in ensuring safety while adding value to your property. Whether you opt for resurfacing or sealcoating, both options provide distinct benefits that contribute towards extending the life of your driveway. By implementing proper maintenance practices consistently, you can ensure that your investment remains functional and appealing for years to come.